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This place is special to me because I have watched it transform yet still maintain strong ties to its history during my 13 years living here. An historic neighborhood in Birmingham, Alabama, Avondale joins the old and the new, with a focus on community. Avondale has grown from a small settlement clustered around a spring to a thriving entertainment district, spurred by the natural beauty and heritage of Avondale Park. Local businesses pay tribute to Miss Fancy, the elephant that lived in the park during its brief stint as a zoo. They also celebrate the former occupants of their buildings (post office, firehouse, saloon), while poised to craft memorable stories of their own. The area fosters a community spirit, from casual eateries, watering holes, shops and live music venues, to church cookouts and outreach programs. Even the ducks contribute to that sense of community, as they swim and hang out together in the park. I love my neighborhood!
Our vacation spot where we suspend reality to relax, indulge, and let go. Our favorite spots are Bread and Roses for breakfast, lunch, and a late afternoon coffee jolt (laying on the beach is hard work). After dinner we head to the Front Porch to hear the piano man and theater lovers belt out showtunes. We'll catch musical theater at the Ogunquit Playhouse. We'll take leisurely walks along Marginal Way (it's better than a treadmill and the view of the seemingly endless ocean is calming). When rains comes we hangout in our rental cottage to read, watch mindless TV, and nap.
This place is special to me because it's where my great aunt Hazel lived in 1921 when she was 19 years old. During that year, she ran a beauty salon and kept a journal of her life in town. Through my research using newspapers from the day and stories from the journal, I’ve gotten to know the town pretty well. These are my recommendations if you visit Austin, MN in 1921—sorry, I’m still trying to locate the speakeasies.
This place is special to me because when I moved to LA in my 20s, going to “The Strip” was the ultimate night out. Not only did I get to see tons of amazing bands here, but the vibe of the area holds a unique electricity. Despite Los Angeles’ characteristic sprawl, this area has much to love for any rocker in a concentrated place. A fun night out on the Sunset Strip consisted of going to the Rainbow Room for pizza and pre-show drinks—where you might have a rock-celebrity sighting—then going off to a show at the Roxy or the Viper Room. After a night of dancing, drinking, and meeting kindred music souls, you could go grab a hot dog at the famous Carney’s. For any music lover living in or visiting Los Angeles, the Sunset Strip is a must-see place!
As a vegetarian in Providence I have plenty of wonderful options for a meal out, including numerous restaurants that cater solely to vegetarians! However, my husband is an omnivore so it's extra special when I find a place where we can both get a meal we're craving. I left out my favorite exclusively vegetarian restaurants—they can get a map all their own!
There are so many good choices around here that I had to constrain them to an area of two square miles in order to cap the list at ten. This is an ode to dishes that have captured my heart.
This place is special to me because...it was living in “cottage” country, and working at a resort! How great to be able to kayak in the early mornings on a beautiful lake, I learned to sail a catamaran here, mountain biked 1000’s of km’s, skiied and met my husband here, I crashed skiing, major concussion, I ate a mogul😝and he was a ski patroller, the rest is history. I miss our tiny log cabin in the trees, but not the flying squirrels that often ended up in the bedroom, and once in the bed😝. It was an amazing decade spent there, truly blessed, the fondest of memories.
This place is special to me because...it’s isolated, and there are 300kms of white sandy beach to explore, and the only way to get here is by airplane or boat! It’s windswept, the big skies are often filled with colourful kites from the kite-boarders. You can walk for hours on a beach and not see another soul, the food is great, the people are friendly, the vistas are amazing, lots of history to explore, and amazing artisans to visit, what’s not to love? I cried when i had to leave, the Maggie’s stole my heart, so much so, I wear a silver charm of this beautiful archipelago around my neck to remind me everyday of our wonderful time there💜
This is a little island off the coast of Vancouver Island in British Columbia. It’s got a local population of approximately 800, but in the summer this number quadruples. It is a vibrant community of activists, artists and young families. There is a supermarket, a school and other amenities to cater the local and tourist population. We have a tiny place here and always tell our kids that if fairies are real, they live on Hornby Island.
Mayne Island is a special place for our family. It's only a short drive and ferry ride from our place but once you arrive you feel like you're a million miles from home! It has beautiful rain forests, a peaceful environment, sea life and earthy living which makes it just right for a restful getaway. My map is a handmade watercolour painting which is my favourite way to render artwork.
This is a watercolor painting of one of my favorite places - Maui! "Maui no ka oi" means "Maui is the best" in Hawaiian. It includes 12 of the places I plan on visiting next month. A trip to Maui is not complete without a visit to Haleakala, 'Iao Valley, and Mama's Fish House! I love hiking, visiting national and state parks, and seeing the beautiful, unique beauty of Hawaii. I can't wait to snorkel and travel the road to Hana for the first time!
This place is special to me because there is something magical about Lititz, especially during the Christmas season. Even though it is my hometown, the time I spend downtown always feels special. Each shop, cafe, and restaurant is unique and has that hard-to-define small town feel. There is so much to learn about the town's history (founded in 1756 by Count Zinzendorf, a Moravian who named the town after a Bohemian castle). And there is nothing like standing beside friends and neighbors during Christmas in the Park -- singing carols together by candlelight, listening to local school children singing, and watching the Christmas tree light up. Lititz was voted "America's Coolest Small Town" (by Budget Travel magazine in 2013) for so many great reasons! Come visit! (The artwork on this map comes from the woodslice ornaments I paint for the Purple Robin Reserve shop, which sells artwork from over 140 local artists.)
Nova Scotians, nicknamed “Bluenosers” are kind-hearted and winter tough people. Nova Scotia is one of Canada's three Maritime provinces. Known for it’s beautiful scenery with grand old lighthouses,fall foliage with incredible colors of crimson, orange-creamcile’, lime greens, brilliant golds and lemons. Famous for seafood chowder, lobster, apples, blueberries. great vege burgers and Maude Lewis their renowned artist.
Awarded the best urban Park in the World, the Chapultepec Park is an oasis of leisure and peace in the middle of the heavily populated and busy Mexico City. This Park has something to offer for everyone, from gorgeous gardens to chic restaurants and the only castle in Latinoamerica, among other incredible places to visit; Chapultepec Park is truly a gem to discover.
This place is special to me because it is close to home, yet it is so completely different. It is like traveling a million miles away. There is so much beautiful nature. My family loves camping and exploring all around Michigan's Upper Peninsula.